I think at this time, it's safe to say that the new reporting system that we implemented hasn't really panned out and doesn't really feel effective.
The general feeling is that it is arduous to use and takes up quite a bit of time to be implemented and it can be incredibly frustrating when you spend time drumming up support and effort getting people to vote, just to find it doesn't reach the threshold or it gets rejected. There's also the fact that because there is a threshold involved that needs to be met, players are not interested in voting for what they really think, but instead voting to drive the report to the next step, even if they don't agree with it.
With those general feelings in mind, I've come up with a new idea to adapt the current system into. I want to note that this would be an easy adaptation, and would not interfere with finishing off timequakes or starting on the mage revamp. It's something that can be done while waiting for feedback on mage proposals for instance.
Reporting System 2.0
Reporting System 2.0 would remove reporting being open year-round and instead would be integrated into the development process. We would strive to open reports up 2-3 times a year (every 4-6 months) and once they are submitted, we would take time to make the decisions on the reports (which would be dependent on the number of reports submitted) and once decisions are rendered, we would then immediately work on implementing those reports that are approved.
The submission process would be two stages. The first stage would last about 15 days. During this time, anyone who meets the requirements (currently 5 vote weight and > lvl 30, but up to debate) can place up to 3 reports. This again, would be by registration and not per character. During the first 15 days, reports can be edited and changed and what not, but would not be able to be commented on or voted on. They would still remain anonymous.
After the first stage, any report submitted automatically goes into the second stage. The second stage will last another 15 days. Reports will no longer be able to be edited. At this time, players can then vote on reports. Voting options would be Support, Support with Changes or Reject. In order to vote for Support with Changes or Reject, you would need to submit a comment first explaining why. Every player will be able to comment once on a report. All votes and all comments will remain hidden from players. This is in order to stop the envoy war style fights that erupt on reports.
Once the report finishes the second stage, it will be decided on. The three decisions are accept, reject and hold. Accept means we accept it and will implement it. Reject means we will not implement it and Hold means that we like it, but we are not ready to commit the time it takes to implement. We will not give a timeframe on when a hold report will be implemented, it will just be indefinite status. It could be that we do a major rework and are able to work it in with that, or we decide we want to implement it. This category is in response to us rejecting reports that we like but don't have time to do. A kind of middle ground.
Once decisions are rendered and accepted reports are implemented, reports will then be closed until the next time we open them.
If we do decide to go this way, then we'll like just turn off the ability to report things currently and let whatever is up through the current process. I would strive to implement every report we've approved through the current system before moving to a new system.
Let me know your thoughts.